Indiana Passenger Rail Association (NIPRA) will hold a public meeting from
11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25, on the second floor of the
Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce, 162 W. Lincolnway.
The purpose of the
meeting: to discuss recent work completed and the next steps in securing
funding for a Chicago-Fort Wayne-Columbus passenger rail line.
HNTB, a consultant
hired to complete an analysis required under federal law in order for the
rail project to receive federal funding, will open the meeting with a short
presentation. As part of this work, HNTB, in consultation with NIPRA and the
Federal Railroad Administration, developed a Purpose and Need Statement,
created a Public Involvement Plan, performed an analysis of the route
options, developed service alternatives along the preferred route, and
performed preliminary engineering to develop high-level cost estimates based
on the chosen service alternatives.
This work is being
done in several phases, with this one focusing on the corridor between Lima,
Ohio, and Gary.
HNTB, NIPRA, and
local representatives from the respective communities will then be available
to answer questions and take comments in an open house format. The
information will include the following: proposed locations for all the train
stations, an estimate of the amount of double-tracking that will be needed,
possible train schedules, estimated ridership and revenue, and estimated
“This work is
complementary to and supportive of the work being done by other rail
partners to improve passenger rail service throughout Indiana, especially in
northwest Indiana where they are actively working to improve regional
transportation with commuter and passenger rail,” NIPRA President Rich Juram.
“Similar efforts also continue in Ohio to develop this corridor.”
Chicago-Fort Wayne-Columbus corridor would provide high-quality passenger
rail connections to 100 Midwest cities through a regional rail network
offering safe, comfortable, and reliable service with amenities such as
wi-fi and food service. Initial plans are for trains to travel at a maximum
speed of approximately 79 miles per hour and eventually travel at 110 miles
per hour. In many communities along the route, scheduled stops would take
place at existing historic train stations.
about the Chicago-Fort Wayne-Columbus passenger rail, including the reports
produced for this current work, can be found online at